Late Sunday night we noticed that T wasn't as active as he usually is. But he had been playing hard and having a good time, so we wrote it off as being tired. He was still eating fine, drinking fine and going to the bathroom fine. Monday, he had no loss of appetite, drank fine still going to the bathroom fine, but started isolating himself, under things, like the kitchen table, getting way back in his crate, or getting in Gunther's crate and resting. All the while still coming to the door to let me know he had to go out, eating well, and showing no real signs of being ill except for the isolation. Today the same thing, but the isolation turned in the being lethargic and he started feeling really hot, and so off to the vet we went.
Blood was drawn, a full body physical was given, and xrays were taken. They found his white blood cells a little elevated, he had a fever and the start of dehydration. The vet found also in the physical exam a sore area on T's spin. It wasn't until this afternoon that we noticed him arching his back up when he walked. It was after the fever had set in. Anyway. the xrays showed infection around two of the vertebrae in T's back, and diagnosed him with Diskospondylitis. (I will include several links that you can look up, if you are not all ready familiar with it.)
The vet believed that T has had this infection for awhile and that after a fun packed weekend his immune system couldn't fight it off anymore. He said that this is found in large/giant breed dogs, especially German Shepherds and Great Danes. I did run across this one time with a German Shepherd bitch that I had, she had gotten all her shots from her breeder and the breeder, to save money, used the same needles for all the shots and hadn't clean needles. The infection then spread to her spin. With T we caught it in time. There was no compression on the spine and T is going to be fine. They gave him fluids and have put him on an antibiotic for two weeks and an antinflamitory for 5 days, then the vet will check him again. I did find it interesting that males get this more than females. Go figure. Also the onset usually is relatively acute: some dogs have mild signs for several months before examination. There is pain or at least difficulty rising, there's a reluctance to jump, and depending on where the infection is located, they can have difficulty with their back legs. If ignored it can lead to lameness.
Causes can be bacterial or fungal and other causes can be surgery or bite wounds.
Here are the links:
ok I guess that's enough links, though I have several more. But the only thing that is important is the Truman is going to be fine. Tonight he's all ready up and around more than earlier, he even took one of his favorite toys outside to potty with him. LOL.